Cats, dogs and kimonos at Sensoji temple

2 Japanese kimono girls in rickshaw

Cats, dogs, and kimonos. That is what I found at Sensoji Temple. I went in the vain hope that the mikoshi would be there for the 2022 Sanja Festival. But, my dreams were dashed. I couldn’t see them anywhere. They weren’t under Kaminarimon or near Asakusa Shrine. Someone said they were only touring the local neighborhoods. I should have seen it coming, but I didn’t.

But, not to be deterred, I came up with a new plan. After a recent shoot where I photographed kimonos at Sensoji Temple, guess what I did? You got it. I did precisely the same thing. This time I wanted to see if I could get any improvement in my pictures.

dog in festival costume

While there were no mikoshi, many people were at Sensoji and Asakusa Shrine. And quite a few of them were in kimonos or yukatas. It was a splendid sight. Many people brought their pets with them. They dressed their dogs up to the nines. One family even brought along a cat!

That was something out of the ordinary. You often see pets at these events. But they are usually dogs. On rare occasions, you’ll see meerkats. And even more rarely, pigs and rabbits. But a cat? This was a first for me.

colorful kimono woman

Some of the owners must spend small fortunes on their pets. They get dressed up in all sorts of outfits. All of them were very cute. It’s all fun in any case.

Japanese woman in pink kimono

Anyway, the kimonos were fantastic. Some of them were extremely colorful. I tried hard to photograph them, but it was difficult. People often turned at the worst moment, or others entered the field of view when I hit the shutter. On a few occasions, the auto-focus on my camera failed.

cat in festival costume

There are many kimono rental shops in Asakusa. They must do a roaring trade. At home, I checked them on the internet. They were cheaper than I expected. Things must be very competitive, especially in the warmer months.

Japanese girls in kimonos at Sensoji temple taking photos

The rickshaw drivers also had a busy day. It was good to see them running on the street with passengers in their carriages. I’ve never been on one. Maybe that is something I should rectify in the future.

Anyway, it was a great day. The weather was amazing. It was warm, and there were some great clouds in the sky. Unfortunately, the Sanja hasn’t completely returned.

young couple in kimonos at Sensoji

We can only hope that the Sanja Festival will happen in 2023. And then we will be able to photograph pets and kimonos at Sensoji temple again! I see the path of my photo life is beginning to take a different route.

What camera gear did I use for cats, dogs, and kimonos at Sensoji temple?

Camera body: Fujifilm X-T3

Fujifilm Lenses: 

  • XF 16-55mm F2.8 R LM WR 
  • XF 55-200mm f/3.5-4.8 R LM OIS

If you want to see more articles about kimonos, look at:

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